Ebrahim Raisi, Iran’s hardline judiciary chief, has won a landslide victory in the country’s presidential election, a vote that both propelled the supreme leader’s protege into Tehran’s highest civilian position and saw the lowest turnout in the Islamic Republic’s history.
Raisi won 61.95 percent of the vote in Friday’s election on a voter turnout of 48.8 percent.
Raisi, 60, will take office in August, replacing moderate President Hassan Rouhani who was not allowed by the constitution to run for a third consecutive term.
He will take power at a critical time, as Iran seeks to salvage its tattered nuclear deal with major powers and free itself from punishing US sanctions that have driven a sharp economic downturn.
The election of Raisi, himself sanctioned by the United States over human rights abuses, became more of a coronation after his strongest competition found themselves disqualified from running.
Outgoing President Rouhani visited Raisi at his office to congratulate him.
“We will stand by and cooperate fully with the president-elect for the next 45 days, when the new government takes charge (in early August),” state media quoted Rouhani as saying.
Rouhani, left, meets with Iran’s President-elect Ebrahim Raisi in Tehran [Official Presidential website/Handout/Reuters]Russia
Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated Raisi and expressed hopes for “further development of a constructive bilateral cooperation”, according to RIA news agency citing a press officer at the Russian embassy in Tehran.
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said he looked forward to working with Raisi towards “further strengthening” of fraternal ties between Pakistan and Iran for “regional peace, progress and prosperity”.
Congratulations to Excellency brother Ibrahim Raisi @raisi_com on his landmark victory in the Islamic Republic of Iran’s 13th Presidential elections. Look forward to working with him for further strengthening of our fraternal ties and for regional peace, progress and prosperity.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) June 19, 2021
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan congratulated Raisi on his victory, saying he believed cooperation between the two neighbours would become stronger during Raisi’s term.
“Stating my belief that cooperation between our two countries will strengthen during your presidency, I am ready to work together with you,” Erdogan said in a letter sent to Raisi.
Assad congratulated Raisi on his victory and said he was keen to work with the new president to strengthen ties between the two countries, a statement from the Syrian presidency said.
“I extend my sincere congratulations and blessings on the occasion of your [Raisi’s] election as President of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” Iraq’s President Barham Salih said.
“We in Iraq look forward to strengthening our solid relations with our neighbour Iran and its people.”
Head of human rights group Agnes Callamard said Raisi’s election win called for Raisi to be investigated for “crimes against humanity”.
“That Ebrahim Raisi has risen to the presidency instead of being investigated for the crimes against humanity of murder, enforced disappearance and torture, is a grim reminder that impunity reigns supreme in Iran,” she posted on Twitter.
“We continue to call for Ebrahim Raisi to be investigated for his involvement in past and ongoing crimes under international law, including by states that exercise universal jurisdiction.”
The outcome of #Iran “election” was predictable. But nevertheless, that #EbrahimRaisi has risen to the presidency instead of being investigated for the crimes against humanity of murder, enforced disappearance and torture, is a grim reminder that impunity reigns supreme in Iran
— Agnes Callamard (@AgnesCallamard) June 19, 2021
“We congratulate the Islamic Republic of Iran for the success of the democratic process, the holding of the presidential election and the victory of Ebrahim Raisi as Iran’s president,” Hazem Qassem, Hamas spokesman in Gaza, said in a statement.
“We wish the Islamic Republic of Iran progress and prosperity. Iran has always been a fundamental and a real supporter of the Palestinian cause and the Palestinian resistance.”
United Arab Emirates
“We wish for the Islamic Republic, and for our bilateral relations, stability, continuity and prosperity,” Vice-President and de facto Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid said in a statement tweeted by Dubai’s media office.
Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed also sent a message of congratulations to Raisi, state news agency WAM reported.
UAE leaders congratulate Ebrahim Raisi on winning Iran’s presidential election#WamNewshttps://t.co/d44qtkRkJQ
— WAM English (@WAMNEWS_ENG) June 19, 2021
Human Rights Watch
Raisi’s path to presidency was through “repression and an unfair election”, Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at HRW, said in a statement.
“As head of Iran’s repressive judiciary, Raisi oversaw some of the most heinous crimes in Iran’s recent history, which deserve investigation and accountability rather than election to high office.”
. @hrw’s @MichaelARPage: “Iranian authorities paved the way for Ebrahim Raeesi to become president through repression and an unfair election” https://t.co/MNy4NPARYw pic.twitter.com/F5XrEoEBNI
— Tara Sepehri Far (تارا سپهریفر) 😷 (@sepehrifar) June 19, 2021
UAE, Austria sign Comprehensive Strategic Partnership agreement
Declaration launches a new stage of cooperation between the two countries. His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Sebastian Kurz, Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria, today attended the signing of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between the UAE…
Declaration launches a new stage of cooperation between the two countries.
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Sebastian Kurz, Federal Chancellor of the Republic of Austria, today attended the signing of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between the UAE and Austria.
The joint declaration made by the two countries reaffirms their commitment to expanding their relations and launching a new stage of cooperation to achieve their shared goals and drive growth in their countries.
The agreement was signed by Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, and Alexander Schallenberg, Austria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, in the presence of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan; Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoun Al Nahyan, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Airports; Mohamed Mubarak Al Mazrouei, Under-Secretary of the Crown Prince Court of Abu Dhabi, Ibrahim Salem Al Musharakh, UAE Ambassador to Austria, Mag. Gernot Blumel, Austria’s Minister of Finance, and Dr. Margarete Schramböck, Minister for Digital and Economic Affairs.
Below is the full text of the joint declaration:
Areas of Focused Cooperation
Bollywood: Shilpa Shetty files case against media houses
Actor Shilpa Shetty has filed a defamation suit in Bombay High Court against 29 media personnel and media houses, accusing them of “false reporting and maligning her image” following the arrest of her husband Raj Kundra in a case connected with creation and distribution of pornographic content. The hearing in Kundra’s case is scheduled for…
Actor Shilpa Shetty has filed a defamation suit in Bombay High Court against 29 media personnel and media houses, accusing them of “false reporting and maligning her image” following the arrest of her husband Raj Kundra in a case connected with creation and distribution of pornographic content.
The hearing in Kundra’s case is scheduled for Friday.
Shetty urged the high court to issue a “permanent and mandatory injunction restraining the defendants, (themselves and through their servants, agents, assigns and/or any person claiming by or through them) from making and/or publishing and/or reproducing and/or circulating and/or speaking and/or communicating, any derogatory and defamatory statements.”
She also requested the court to issue a mandatory order directing the defendants to forthwith delete and/or remove the defamatory articles and the defamatory videos from their respective websites and social media platforms and to issue an unconditional apology.
The petitioner is also seeking a mandatory order “directing the defendants to issue a clarificatory statement and an unconditional apology in their respective websites and elsewhere where the defamatory statements are contained stating that the defamatory articles and defamatory videos were published without ascertaining the veracity or the genuineness of the statements and hence, are baseless, unsubstantiated and unwarranted”.
The defendants be ordered and directed to pay to the plaintiff (Shilpa Shetty) an amount of Rs20 crore (200 million) together with interest thereon at 18 per cent per annum from the date of filing of the suit until payment and/or realisation, read the plea.
The actor also sought for passing appropriate directions requiring Facebook, YouTube and other social media platforms to remove or delete or take down the defamatory articles and defamatory videos.
Shetty’s husband Raj Kundra was arrested by police on July 19 along with 11 other people on charges related to the alleged creation of pornographic films. Kundra has been named as the key conspirator by the Mumbai Police which has slapped charges against him under Sections 420 (cheating), 34 (common intention), 292, and 293 (related to obscene and indecent advertisements and displays) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) besides relevant sections of the IT Act and the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, said the police.
Mumbai Crime Branch on Tuesday said that actor Shilpa Shetty has not yet been given a clean chit in the pornography racket case where her husband and businessman Raj Kundra is the prime accused.
“Shilpa Shetty has not been given a clean chit yet. All the possibilities and angles are being probed. Forensic auditors have been appointed and they are looking into the transactions of all the accounts in this case. This audit may take some time as it is a lengthy process but until the audit is complete, no clean chit to anyone,” the officials had said.
Two rockets fired near US embassy in Baghdad
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